So I responded to this question on Facebook. It was something like "Why do you think the music market for the St.Louis music scene is bad."
I regret commenting because the notifications started happening and that shit is annoying but when I finally read all the comments the one word that I constantly kept seeing was "Haters."
It's the go to word when you describe the music scene here in St.Louis. I see the word all the time but I had to ask myself this question....
"Is it truly hate?"
I don't think it is.
There's this requirement that St.Louis people should support St.Louis artist. I don't really look at it like that. I support shit I feel is dope. I'm not going to support you just because we're from the same city. Music is subjective and I don't think everything I hear is good. My brain doesn't operate like that.
I will say this. I keep negative comments to myself about St.Louis artist. I'll never write a negative review bashing someone's work from St.Louis. That's a code I created for myself when I started this blog. If I don't like it I won't write about it. Simple.
If a artist asks me what I think of their music and I'm truly not feeling it I will give them a honest and respectful answer but I won't bash them in public.
Back to the "Haters" though? What are haters?
My Definition = A person that goes out their way to throw roadblocks on your journey to success.
People Definition = Only 20 people came to my show, this city full of haters.
If I go around to everybody and say "Don't go to this artist show. They're trash" that is hating. It's hating because I'm trying to change people's perception of you in a negative fashion without letting them form their own opinion of your creativity.
If I'm at home and I don't feel like going to your show so I stay home that's not hating that's me choosing coziness over you. It's nothing personal it's just a choice. I'm not telling people not to go to your show. I'm not saying negative shit about you. It's not hating.
I think the problem is people focus on the hating or the idea of haters too much. The more you focus on it the more of a reality it becomes to you. So imagine if you just focused on the positive things you could accomplish instead? You'd see more positive outcomes.
I'm going to have to be the bad guy on this part. Another problem that no one will address is that some people just aren't intriguing or good enough to actually go see or listen to. They also have no reputation.
There's gonna be times that there are only 5 people in the crowd. It sucks but you want to be a professional so you gotta put on the performance of a lifetime. This is your opportunity to win over 5 new fans so they can spread the word about your performance. It builds your rep.
I also saw radio getting a lot of the blame. Radio is dead. The single is dead. You don't need radio to acquire a fan base anymore. Now of course if you're getting play on the radio that's a plus but this isn't 2002 where if you're played on the radio you automatically gone pop off.. Shit has changed drastically. You're better off doing a interview on the radio to plug your upcoming shows instead of getting the station to play your song.
I'm also tired of people placing acts of violence on the local music scene. The rappers the local scene lost to violence had nothing to do with music. They weren't killed over bars. The foundation of their beefs started from street shit. They were killed over legitimate street beef not music.
I ask all the people that says St.louis hates St.Louis this question. If all we do is support outside shit like you claim then why do the most popular tours never come here? Are we hating on them too? No it's because no one is buying tickets and there is no demand for them so by your definition does that mean we're hating on Drake and Bruno Mars too? They damn sure not coming here because St.Louis doesn't care for them.
All these problems mentioned with our local scene happens in all the other cities they praise. Go to Atlanta they not super unified they have problems. New York the same. California the same. Chicago the same. Every city has the same issues the difference is those cities are way bigger than St.Louis and have way better infrastructure.
We throw the same live shows in the same 4-5 venues and there's nothing wrong with that. We're working with the venues that will allow performances without any bullshit. A lot of the venues here don't allow hip-hop to be performed in their establishment. Basically they're scared of black people. It's the reality of it.
In Chicago there are music venues everywhere. You could walk around Chicago and walk into numerous jam sessions where you can just hop on the mic and do your thing. St.Louis doesn't have that atmosphere. It's very black and white here and that's because our infrastructure is awful.
Almost EVERY hot rapper from ATL say ATL is full of HATE. All of them but they still running the game. Why? It's because they don't trip off it and just do their thing. They don't sit and complain.
I can't tell you how many Breakfast Club and Hot 97 interviews I've seen New York artists say "NY don't support NY." Too damn many. Stop putting this hateful reputation on St.Louis when it comes to music because it's dumb. Hate and lack of support happens everywhere.
It's not hate in St.Louis. It's just people don't give a fuck about the music scene for real. There's a difference. Historically St.Louis has always been this way for decades. We've always been full of talent but the people who aren't artist don't give a fuck about the music scene.
You ever see people faces when they're invited to go to a local show? It's like you're asking them to go to work on their day off. It's how people feel around here. It don't matter how talented the person is that's performing. They will try to find something else to do instead.
I can't fault a person for what they want to do with their time besides support the music scene here. It's their life. Focus on the people who do care. Focusing on everything wrong is so counterproductive.
If a person from St.Louis don't care to go to your show or listen to your music that is his or her preference that's not hate.
I can't make people like The Domino Effect, I can't make people like J'Demul, I can't make people like Smino that's an opinion they have to form for themselves. All I can say is they're dope as fuck and you can agree or disagree with me.
When Nelly started I remember living in U.City and EVERYBODY was playing "Gimme What U Got." Everybody thought it was the shit. They popped off in the city first, went to ATL, got the deal and Nelly kicked the door down. If you got dope shit and know how to move you'll be straight.
Now will it be harder to pop in St.Louis. Yes, I'm not denying that but is it impossible? Fuck no.
The last few local shows I've been to were packed. Where is this hater shit you speaking about?
I'm a give you this story then I'm a rap it up.
I was at Vibes 2015 downstairs watching Arshad Goods perform with a lady friend of mine that shall remain nameless. So maybe after 2 songs into his set. She says "He's boring." I didn't agree with that opinion of course but she didn't say it maliciously or with ill intent she just spoke what she felt. She proceeded to go upstairs and I stayed downstairs.
What she displayed wasn't hate. Arshad's music just wasn't her cup of tea and that's okay. That won't stop Arshad from doing what he wants to do. He won't lose any sleep over it.
People have to stop complaining and just focus on their business and their music. The internet has made the playing field even. There is no more excuses anymore. You can do anything with your music or creativity.
The landscape of the St.Louis music scene is changing and the people complaining about that same old bullshit have no idea that this renaissance is happening because they're too worried about "Haters." Don't trip though because a space on the bandwagon will be open for you once this shit really get cracking and we wont judge yall. Everybody can't be right. Mistakes happen.
Let the myth of "Haters" go and stop using it as an excuse. Go be great.